Is a Cavity a Dental Emergency?

Raise your hand if you ever experienced a toothache that ruined your entire day.

If you are reading this article, you probably know what we are talking about.

Cavities can be a nuisance, to say the least, but there are moments when the pain is so intense that you would give anything to stop it.

So, this begs the question: are cavities dental emergencies?

The short answer is that it depends.

While some cavities should result in an emergency visit to Lakeview Modern Dentistry, others can wait until a regular appointment.

How can you make the difference?

Let's find out!

When to Seek Emergency Dental Care for a Cavity

Here are some of the signs that can tell you if your cavity represents a dental emergency:

Severe Pain and Sensitivity

If a cavity is causing severe pain and/or sensitivity, it may be necessary to seek emergency dental care in McFarland. This may indicate that the cavity has progressed to the inner layers of the tooth and may require more urgent and extensive treatment.


If you also notice swelling in the gums or face, this may be a sign of infection and may require emergency dental care.


If the cavity is the result of a traumatic injury, such as a blow to the mouth, then you should seek emergency dental care to address any damage to the tooth and surrounding tissue.


If you notice a pocket of pus in the gums or at the root of a tooth, then that's an abscess and it needs to be treated urgently. An abscess can cause severe pain and infection and even lead to complications if not treated in a timely manner.

Why Do Cavities Happen in the First Place?

Cavities are small holes in the tooth's surface (the enamel) that act as entry points for bacteria. As the damage progresses, more of the tooth's layers are affected until bacteria reach the nerves of the tooth.

But, how do these holes appear in the first place? Whenever you eat or drink anything except water, the bacteria in your mouth feed on the food particles. When they do that, they release an acid that can damage your teeth's layers.

The good news is that cavities can be reversed if they are discovered in the early stage - demineralization. For that you need to:

  • Brush at least twice a day and floss every night to remove plaque and bacteria from the teeth and gums.
  • Use fluoride-containing products to strengthen tooth enamel and make it more resistant to acidic foods and bacteria.
  • Eat a healthy diet that is low in sugar and high in fruits and vegetables.
  • Visit the dentist regularly for dental check-ups and cleanings to identify and treat cavities early on.

Dealing with Persistent Tooth Pain? Call Us Now!

If you're experiencing intense tooth pain that doesn't go away with OTC medication, you may be dealing with an infection that needs to be treated right away.

Call Lakeview Modern Dentistry right away at (608) 716-8622 and we will schedule a same-day appointment for you.

For regular appointments, you can also contact us online.

Back To Blogs

$99 New Patient Special

No insurance? No problem. Take charge of your dental health with our $99 New Patient Special, which covers everything you need to start your journey towards a lifetime of healthy teeth and gums. This is the best way for you to get to know us, and for us to get to know you. First time patients will receive the following:

 X-Rays
 Cleaning

 Exam
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form